Cheezy Vegan Cauliflower Nuggets

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Whoa, I just realised when I bit into them and took photos, they freakishly look like chicken nuggets. Though there’s a big distinct in taste, it is totally awesome to eat, but sadly they aren’t that filling so if you’re making it for yourself, this may be enough but if you’re making it for two or three, you’ll need to make double, because you will want it ALL to yourself!

I’ve been wanting to make some cauliflower nuggets ever since I tried making the cauliflower garlic bread. Seriously, is there anything cauliflower can’t do? Of course, cauliflower can’t dance! But you get my point, there are so many awesome uses for this vegetable!

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(If someone says cauliflower is a fruit, I might go punch my head in a wall, haha, because I seriously can’t get over the fact that CUCUMBERS and AVOCADOS are considered a fruit).

Just remember, the less water there is, the better the results, otherwise you may end up with soggy nuggets. If that does happen, you can break them apart and leave them in the oven a bit longer so they dry up.

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Cheezy Vegan Cauliflower Nuggets

Cheezy Sauce
1/3 cup cashew, pre-soaked
2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 tablespoon extra light olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
A sprinkle Himalayan/sea salt

Cauliflower Mince
1 cauliflower head
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
6 basil leaves
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon brown rice flour
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan/sea salt
A few sprinkles lemon pepper (or regular)

Sauce: Cholula sauce, tabasco sauce or Rao’s Arrabiata sauce (recommended).

Soak the cashews in water for at least one hour.

Take the cauliflower head and remove the leaves and stem. (You don’t have to throw it out though, if you add a little oil and bake them, they almost taste like chips!) Break the cauliflower into small florets and toss it in the food processor.

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Peel and chop the garlic cloves in half, then peel and dice enough yellow onion to fit half a cup. Toss both of those into the food processor with the cauliflower. Pulse until the vegetables have been chopped into miniature rice-looking things. Be sure to stir it so you don’t get uneven pieces.

Spoon all the cauliflower, onion and garlic mince onto a plate and spread the mixture out flatly. You can either steam it on a steamer for about 8 minutes or in the microwave for 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the cashew, almond milk, nutritional yeast, corn starch, olive oil, lemon juice and salt in a high powered blender. Blend until the mixture is runny and completely smooth.

By this time, the cauliflower should have finished steaming/heating up. Take it off the stove to let it cool down by stirring the cauliflower to let the heat out.

While the cauliflower is cooling down, spoon the blended cheezy mixture onto a large bowl.

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Put the cauliflower mince into a cheese cloth and squeeze out as much water as you possibly can, and keep squeezing there because you can get almost half a bowl full of water. No, don’t stop! Use more strength and squeeze even MORE out, you can do it! (Again, you can use the squeezed water as broth so don’t throw it!)

Once the cauliflower is a dry plump, throw it in the large bowl with the sauce. Chop the basil leaves very finely and add it in the bowl as well, along with the tablespoon of nutritional yeast, brown rice flour, garlic powder, onion powder, dried basil, dried oregano, salt and lemon pepper.

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Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).

Spray some non-stick cooking oil on an oven tray. Use your hands to form the mince dough into nugget sizes, then align them on the oven tray.

Bake in the oven for about 30-35 minutes until the top turns golden. (Though every oven is different so check often to make sure they don’t bun).

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Cheezy Vegan Cauliflower Nuggets
Serves: 2
 

Ingredients
Cheezy Sauce
  • ⅓ cup cashew, pre-soaked
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon extra light olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • A sprinkle Himalayan/sea salt
Cauliflower Mince
  • 1 cauliflower head
  • ½ cup chopped yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 6 basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon Himalayan/sea salt
  • A few sprinkles lemon pepper (or regular)
  • Sauce: Cholula sauce, tabasco sauce or Rao’s Arrabiata sauce (recommended).

Instructions
  1. Soak the cashews in water for at least one hour.
  2. Take the cauliflower head and remove the leaves and stem. (You don’t have to throw it out though, if you add a little oil and bake them, they almost taste like chips!) Break the cauliflower into small florets and toss it in the food processor.
  3. Peel and chop the garlic cloves in half, then peel and dice enough yellow onion to fit half a cup. Toss both of those into the food processor with the cauliflower. Pulse until the vegetables have been chopped into miniature rice-looking things. Be sure to stir it so you don’t get uneven pieces.
  4. Spoon all the cauliflower, onion and garlic mince onto a plate and spread the mixture out flatly. You can either steam it on a steamer for about 8 minutes or in the microwave for 3 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, add the cashew, almond milk, nutritional yeast, corn starch, olive oil, lemon juice and salt in a high powered blender. Blend until the mixture is runny and completely smooth.
  6. By this time, the cauliflower should have finished steaming/heating up. Take it off the stove to let it cool down by stirring the cauliflower to let the heat out.
  7. While the cauliflower is cooling down, spoon the blended cheezy mixture onto a large bowl.
  8. Put the cauliflower mince into a cheese cloth and squeeze out as much water as you possibly can, and keep squeezing there because you can get almost half a bowl full of water. No, don’t stop! Use more strength and squeeze even MORE out, you can do it! (Again, you can use the squeezed water as broth so don’t throw it!)
  9. Once the cauliflower is a dry plump, throw it in the large bowl with the sauce. Chop the basil leaves very finely and add it in the bowl as well, along with the tablespoon of nutritional yeast, brown rice flour, garlic powder, onion powder, dried basil, dried oregano, salt and lemon pepper.
  10. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  11. Spray some non-stick cooking oil on an oven tray. Use your hands to form the mince dough into nugget sizes, then align them on the oven tray.
  12. Bake in the oven for about 30-35 minutes until the top turns golden. (Though every oven is different so check often to make sure they don’t bun).

 

7 comments

  1. Ashley

    About how much cheese sauce would you say your recipe made? I want to make these nuggets but I have a lot of allergies and will have to use a cheese sauce that is allergy-free for me. How many cups of it should I use? Thanks!

    • Susanna

      The sauce is actually suppose to be combined with the cauliflower to make the nuggets so it would require the amount I listed to make the amount of nuggets I made, you can totally use less if you want :)

  2. rachel

    I just got all the stuff to make these and then realized I don’t understand step number 4. Are you saying to put the plate on top of a steamer basket? Or do I put the minced vegetables straight into the steamer basket? I don’t have a microwave. Maybe you’re talking about a different kind of steamer than I’m thinking of?

  3. Arlene

    Haven’t made these yet. The recipe is very healthful and being a member of T.O.P.S. am always needing recipes that are not calorie loaded.

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